Former SFA Performance Chief, Mark Wotte, has issued a warning to Celtic that Feyenoord will find a way to goal in Rotterdam tomorrow night, but that the De Kuip team’s lack of physicality can be exploited if used correctly. The Hoops are looking to make progress in Europe during Brendan Rodgers’ second spell as boss and this fixture offers some real hope.
Far from the current elite’s big guns, Feyenoord out of Pot 1 in the Champions League group stages is as good as we could have hoped for. However, it must also be remembered that they are Eredivisie Champions for a reason and so will be a real threat and danger to Celtic’s chances of staying in European football beyond Christmas time.
Wotte is of the view that Rodgers best chance to hurt his former club at home is to copy how fellow Dutch sides play domestically against them; counter-attacking and physical. As reported by Scottish Sun, the Dutchman said: “This is a memorable game between the clubs – there’s so much history involving Feyenoord and Celtic. They, of course, beat Celtic to win the European Cup in 1970, the first Dutch team to win the competition. Then in later years Celtic had Wim Jansen as manager plus Henrik Larsson, Bobby Petta and Pierre van Hooijdonk as players – all of whom were popular figures at Feyenoord.”
“It is a special club for me. I only managed four appearances as a player but I was also technical director during some tough financial times. The managers during my period were Bert van Marwijk, Ruud Gullit and Erwin Koeman. Feyenoord will press Celtic high and pass quickly. Most teams they face decide on packed defences and counter attacking – and Brendan Rodgers will know this.”
The man who wrote a review into the start of Scottish football during his time at the SFA insists that the Bhoys must be wary about their threat, but at the same time, can use their own experience of Ibrox recently to silence the home crowd and gain momentum.
He said: “I wouldn’t say Feyenoord are particularly physical. Sometimes that can be a problem. But they are technically and attacking a very good side while I am looking forward to seeing how Celtic play now with Brendan Rodgers.
He added: “Feyenoord are scoring a lot of goals at the moment and they will definitely score at home again. Celtic will need to be careful. But I am sure they will love the atmosphere. I think it is the best in the country. Celtic’s recent experience against (the)Rangers at Ibrox without any supporters will definitely help them.”